HEALTHCARE is the basic right of everyone. Unfortunately, no appropriate healthcare facilities are available in Dera Bugti district of Balochistan.

Dera Bugti, mind you, is one of the richest districts in Balochistan in terms of natural resources. Five gas companies are functioning and more are being established there. The district supplies gas to all parts of Pakistan, but is still deprived of basic necessities, like water.

Water is essential for all human creatures. Due to shortage of water in Pirkoh area of the district, which is an urban setting in the local context, many animals have died and people are forced to use contaminated water for drinking purposes. The resulting cholera epidemic has so far taken 20 lives, while close to 3,000 others have been affected by it in Pirkoh alone.

People are actually considering committing suicide due to the crisis as it is hard for the parents to watch their children die in pain. Recently, a mother in Pirkoh asked a cleric if it is permissible for her to commit suicide because her child had died of thirst and cholera. Is it not enough for those in power to feel shaken to their core? I wonder what it will take for them to feel the pain the people feel every day.

The government has not taken any concrete measures to overcome the water crisis. The provincial authorities need to have some mercy on the people in whose name they do all their politics. Please, for God’s sake, give us the basics of human needs. Give us potable water. Please.

Farooq Bugti
Lahore

Published in Dawn, May 20th, 2022

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